The author sequestering at home

During this time of crisis, I’ve made sure to stay in the house for the most part. That is, with the exception of trips to essential businesses, such as the liquor store.

During these brief outings on the South Side, I’ve noticed a few things: It’s terribly hard to find water, people are panic-shopping for paper towels (how much do you all spill?), and 79th Street didn’t get the social-distancing memo. I’ve also discovered that the convenience store (a.k.a. the neighborhood corner sto’) has most of the essential items with less of a hassle than the grocery store — with the exception of its Lotto line. And based on the girl I saw yesterday, they also still serve Doritos with meat and cheese, which may not have been sanitary even before all this.

People have asked me how I’ve coped with this Covid-19 outbreak and my answer is simple: Call of Duty!! Almost every day I wake up, I pray, I take my medicine from my dispensary, and I turn on COD Modern Warfare. You have no idea how many hours you can pass by competing in Warzone with 149 other gamers. I’ve played it so much that I think it’s only right that I receive the Medal of Honor. I’m defeating Covid-19 by staying inside and defeating gamers across the world at the same time. That’s called killing two birds with one stone, my friends.

Unfortunately, I can’t “Netflix and chill” these days because I don’t know where these women have been, but I can “Netflix and binge.” This is the perfect time to rewatch The Wire for the 11th time. And just think: We started off last year talking about Bird Box. This year we’re living in it.

If I’m not binge-watching Drew Barrymore eat people alive on Netflix, I might be joining the various parties on Instagram Live and social media in general. Some people are DJ’ing to the masses, like DJ D Nice; others, like rapper Boosie, are providing us with laughs and adult viewing (and $1,000 to certain willing viewers). I’ve even seen beat battles between legendary producers and comedians doing their greatest celebrity impressions. Twitter has been my favorite social app for getting updates on both the pandemic and what new challenges TikTok presents. (By the way, it’s elbow thrust left, elbow thrust right, shimmy, clap ON BEAT, and next person.)

With the sports world at a halt, I have to admit that, from time to time, I’ve turned on NBA 2K20 and watched the CPU compete against itself for a full 48-minute game. It’s almost like the real thing, with the exception of fewer uncalled traveling violations.

I’ve cooked every day for the last 13 days. So much so that the other day I threw a homemade sauce together and yelled out, “Let’s take it to flavor town!” as if I’m turning into Guy Fieri. Another day I found myself smelling like extra virgin olive oil while watching @Wangbrotherss' IG page (Harold’s Chicken Shack owners) as they lathered chicken, fish, and shrimp with the gift of God sauce we know as “mild sauce.” I might have shed a tear or seven, until I realized they are still taking orders (call-in only).

I’ve also found this a great time to create. People who’ve been trying to do things for themselves but couldn’t because of busy work schedules, this is your time to shine. Artists create art, writers write your novels, and wannabe rappers get your resumes together, because a lot of businesses will need extra hands on deck when this is over.

But in all seriousness, play your part. Whatever you do, stay inside. And please remember these three words: Wash yo’ hands!!